November 24, 2014

With their final three games before the All-Star break at home, the Dallas Stars believe they can halt a January slide that's come mostly on the road.

Looking to continue their success at the American Airlines Center, the Stars can begin a potential turnaround by preventing their season-high losing streak from reaching five games Thursday night against the Edmonton Oilers.

Dallas (29-13-5) entered the new year with a seven-point lead in the Western Conference, but it's 1-5-2 this month and finds itself five points behind a West-leading Chicago team that's won 12 straight. The Stars have earned two points in six of those January games that came away from home.

Mired in an 0-5-3 road slide and allowing an average of 4.6 goals in the last seven of those losses, the Stars should be glad to remain in Texas prior to next weekend's All-Star festivities.

"They are huge games," defenseman Alex Goligoski told the Stars' official website after they concluded an 0-2-1 trip through California with Tuesday's 3-2 loss to Los Angeles.

"Get some ground back and throw some points back up on the board. We've been good at home lately. We got to go home and get the job done."

Dallas is 17-5-0 at home, where it's yielded 11 goals in the last nine and won a season-high five in a row before falling 2-1 to Minnesota on Jan. 9. The Stars allowed their three opponents on the recent trip to go 4 for 7 on the power play, but they've killed 17 of 18 penalties in the last seven at home.

Antti Niemi has a 1.30 goals-against average during a 6-1-0 stretch at home.

''We've got to regroup, get things in order and focus on the rest of the season,'' forward Antoine Roussel said. ''It's going to come hard. Teams in the league are getting better, and they're aiming at us."

Home or away, Dallas needs to improve on the 1.8 goals its averaged in the last six games. It's gone 2 for 15 on the power play during that stretch.

Tyler Seguin is third in the league with 53 points and three behind teammate Jamie Benn, but he has two goals and one assist in 2016.

Jason Spezza recorded a hat trick as Dallas won for the third straight time at home over Edmonton (19-24-5), 4-2 on Oct. 13. The Stars are 13-1-2 in the last 16 at home against the Oilers, who avenged the October defeat with a 2-1 overtime victory in Edmonton on Dec. 4.

Playing its first game since learning third-leading scorer Ryan Nugent-Hopkins would miss six to eight weeks with a hand injury, Edmonton's four-game point streak ended with a 6-4 loss at Tampa Bay on Tuesday.

"At the end of the night that's too many (goals against)," coach Todd McLellan told the Oilers' official website. "They're too talented a team for us to play as loose and poorly as we did in our zone, and that's team-wide."

Cam Talbot, who signed a three-year contract extension Sunday, watched as backup Anders Nilsson faced 30 shots. Talbot, who has a 1.45 GAA in his last four starts, hasn't played against Dallas this season with Nilsson facing 94 shots in the two meetings.

Jordan Eberle has two goals and two assists in his last four games against the Stars.

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